Once upon a time, only planes used to be hijacked. In the 911 incident some 10 years ago, 4 Islamic militants of the famous Al-Qaeda group, led by Osama bin Laden, hijacked planes in their attack against the United States of America. One of the planes then crashed into the World Trade Centre in New York killing thousands. The rest, is history.
Besides aeroplanes, other modes of travel and means of transport, can also be subjected to hijackings as well. Off the coast of Somalia, notorious pirates frequently target large ships plying along the coast there and hijack them. Huge ransoms and demands are then issued prior to the above ships being released safely.
I have read somewhere regarding the Malaysian Navy guarding the Somalian coasts as our shipping liners sail across the dangerous coast around Somalia.
Besides aeroplanes and ships, cars can very well also be a target of hijackings or rather carjacking too. In one of my earlier postings in this blog elsewhere, I wrote upon the topic entitled Pirates of The Malaysian Highways. The above article relates incidences regarding how trailers and container costing millions of dollars belonging to a large transport company, with its headquarters stationed in Johore Baru, being constantly targeted by hijackers along our expressways.
Readers of this blog who fancy reading more about these incidents are requested to refer back to the above said article.
Hardly a week had passed after housewife Teoh Lay Moi, 52, from Jalan Kapar, Klang, Selangor had lost her Toyota Altis to highjacking thieves that the Star newspaper of the 15 October, 2011 edition reported Robber Begs Victim For Forgiveness.
In Georgetown, Penang, a thief, who was said to have assaulted and robbed a woman, went on his knees to beg for forgiveness after he was caught in a citizen’s arrest. The woman who was robbed shouted at the thief, why did you assault a woman?
According to the O.C.P.D. of Penang, Assistant Commissioner, Gan Kong Meng, said the suspect had 10 previous criminal and drugs related records. He was then taken away to the police station later.
Talking about car jacking and robberies that happen in our country, Malaysia, such incidents are becoming more and more rampant these days. As a matter of fact, car jacking and robbing of cars from its owners had taken place even as far back as the 1960’s and 1970’s.
Permit me to relate to you a real life incident which happened some 20 to 30 years ago. This incident befelled my cousin C.S. Lim, a businessman. Lim’s wife, Puan Lim, 40, was paying a visit to her mother in-law at the Pantai medical Centre, located next to a famous Indian temple along Jalan Watson, Klang. Puan Lim, had just parked her new Daihatsu Charade when a long haired and rather unkempt looking gangster accosted her. The gangster was reported to have been armed with a pistol.
The gangster demanded the keys to Puan Lim’s new Daihatsu. Unfortunately, Puan Lim refused to hand over the keys to her new vehicle. As a result, the Chinese gangster then pointed the gun at Puan Lim’s temple and opened fire, killing my cousin’s wife instantly. The thief then drove away Puan Lim’s Daihatsu. This was a classic example of your money or your life episode.
In my opinion, I felt that it was stupid and illogical of Puan Lim not to accede to the gangster’s demands. She should have valued her life more.
Why do I feel that Puan Lim should have agreed or consented to the gangster’s demand that fateful afternoon?
If Puan Lim had acceded to the robber’s demand, she would most probably have been alive today. It should be remembered that Puan Lim’s vehicle was probably insured for 1st party insurance coverage. Being such, in the event that the Daihatsu was stolen, the insurance company, would have been made responsible for the Daihatsu’s loss.
And in all, Puan Lim, my cousin’s wife had reacted irrationally that fateful afternoon. She would have struggled violently as the thief forcibly demanded the keys to the Daihatsu Charade vehicle!
Referring again to housewife, Madam Teoh Lay Moi’s loss of her Toyota Altis, the robbers would be charged for theft in the first place. They would also then be charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code for murder.
Talking further with regards to car hijackings these days, motorists as a matter of fact, can assist to prevent such things from taking place.
Among the steps that can be taken include:-
i. Lock up all the doors to your vehicles when travelling.
ii. Do not leave your vehicles unattended and with the engine running while you attend to some errands.
iii. When disembarking from a vehicle, do not allow vehicle engines to be running with a passenger sitting at the passenger seat. The best alternative is to switch off the engine. Let the passenger sit at the passenger’s seat. Ideally, lock the door to the driver’s side.
Next, we arrive at the question of whether we should put up a struggle or resist should we be accosted by thieves or gangsters attempting to hijack our vehicles. My school teachers used to pose to us questions such as your money or your life?
As a young 13 or 14 year old boy, I was infact unable to arrive at a correct solution to the above problem. But today, as a person with much experience, I am now able to clearly say that we should value our lives more than anything else.
Therefore, if you should be faced with a similar problem as that faced by Puan Teoh Lay Moi of Jalan Kapar, I advice to you would be, act rationally. Give up your vehicle that has been asked of you. The loss of your vehicle is guaranteed by the insurance company under its 1st party scheme.
Do not unduly place your safety under unnecessary duress. Your life is more important than whatever car you may own!
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